Justin Donnelly of The Metal Forge recently conducted an interview with CELTIC FROST mainman Tom Gabriel Fischer. A few excerpts from the chat follow:
On the reaction to the band's latest album, "Monotheist":
"I'm very happy with the reaction to 'Monotheist', as well as very honored and flattered. In all honesty, 'Monotheist' is probably our most successful album ever. That's not something that we could have planned. CELTIC FROST is a very controversial band. We're not a band that has made it very easy for the fans to follow, so it was a very unpredictable situation for us to bring out an album out after such a long absence. On the other hand, I can honestly tell you that, I really didn't give a shit what the fans and the press thought about 'Monotheist'! (Laughs) This album was a deeply personal thing to make. I was very unhappy with some of the last couple of CELTIC FROST releases in the late '80s and the early '90s, and [Martin] Ain and I were determined to make an album that would be one hundred percent CELTIC FROST. That's what really counted for us. And it took us four and a half years to do that. We didn't set any limits. Whatever it took in time and money, we were going to do this album right. In the end, we came out of the studio with an album that we were really happy with. Anything beyond that fact was something that we didn't really care about. Even if the whole world ripped apart 'Monotheist', we were still very proud of the album, because it really is a true CELTIC FROST album. And let's face it, we can't say that about all CELTIC FROST albums can we?"
On whether there will be another CELTIC FROST album:
"There's been plenty of talk about working on a new album, and I know the band would like to do another album, but I'm not going to make a prediction as to whether there's going to be another album. CELTIC FROST, musically speaking, is an extremely exciting band to be in, and I think the band right now is at its pinnacle. I think that we could do an amazing new album if 'Monotheist' was just a start. We have only just reawaken the band at this stage. If there's going to be a new CELTIC FROST album, it will be amazing. However, on a personal level, I find it extremely difficult to be in CELTIC FROST. I have no idea if I have the stamina to sit through, who knows how many more years working with this band. There are certain egos in this band that make it extremely difficult within the context of this band. So at this point, I feel really unable to predict if there's going to be another album or not. I'm currently writing music for it, but I don't know if that's going to be for CELTIC FROST or not. I'm just being honest here. The thing that makes CELTIC FROST an unusual band, and the reason they're such a huge influence is that CELTIC FROST is comprised of volatile and very unusual characters, with very unusual egos. That's our strength. It makes everything we do very different from others. On the other hand, it's also our weakness. It's very difficult to deal with these characters, and this volatile creative force. I mean these are human beings with egos, and what powers us, also makes us weak."
On life on the road with CELTIC FROST:
"Touring is very difficult, because you are forced to be with each other in very closed confines twenty-four hours of the day on the tour bus, in planes, in a hotel or on stage. You always have to deal with each other. There's no escape, basically. That's not always very easy. Touring just never gives you the time to recover from that. And the situation never gets any easier with time. When I was a teenager, I simply wanted to make music. I was prepared to go to any lengths to do that. Nowadays, I'm an adult man, and I know exactly what I am prepared to tolerate, and where my limits are. There are some things I don't need in my life. Sometimes that's a very harsh reality. It is very difficult at times to be in close confines with this band. You have to realise that we brought the band back to life at the tail end of 2000, so we have been working closely together with each other every day since we started work on 'Monotheist'. And then as soon as the album was released, we went on tour. We haven't had a break from one another since 2000. We have been on top of one another since then. That's not necessarily an easy thing to deal with. This is a huge topic, and it's impossible to deal with in a simple way. Don't get me wrong, we all feel extremely blessed that we have this opportunity. Back in the old days, we were a very little metal band, and we never thought that we would get a record deal. Yet we got a record deal. Then we never thought we would get famous. Then we got famous. We never ever thought that CELTIC FROST would mean anything to anyone, but then we became a huge influence on the metal scene throughout the years. We never thought we would get a first chance, but we did. We never thought that we would ever get a second chance at this band, but we have. We never believed that we would ever really tour for any great length of time, but now we can. I don't want to be ungrateful or sound like someone who is always miserable, because this really is my life's dream. I'm doing everything that I ever dreamed of as a kid. It's amazing what we're doing. We're all enjoying it while it lasts. We all know that it's not going to last forever. The music industry changes all the time. Things change, so everything is always volatile. It's amazing to be doing this. I'm just telling you that it is very difficult at times to deal with the personal side of things, and I really don't know how long we all have the stamina to do this. If we are strong enough to keep this working, personally I think we could make an album that will top 'Monotheist'. Eventually we will have to talk about whether we want to do another album or not, and if so, how we will go about these things. We need to deal with these things. I guess by the end of summer, it will be time to do that. Who knows what comes after that."
Read the entire interview at www.themetalforge.com.